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19/01/07
Turner Watercolours to Light Up Tate Britain
- Exhibition gives welcome publicity to campaign to keep painting in the country

JMW Turner 
The Blue Rigi Circa 1841-2
© Private Collection 
Watercolour on paper
230 x 326 mm THREE of JMW Turner's most significant watercolours go on display together for the first time, at Tate Britain from next Monday.

The Blue Rigi, The Dark Rigi and The Red Rigi are a series that capture the various patterns of light falling at different times of the day on Mount Rigi, Switzerland, as seen from Lucerne.

Known as the Riga Watercolours, the three paintings are seen by art experts as the finest examples of Turner's watercolour work.

"The exhibition will unite these extraordinary finished watercolours with Tate's collection of Turner's preparatory material for the Rigi series," said Stephen Deuchar, Director, Tate Britain, "including a sequence of stunning watercolour studies and sketchbooks that highlight the many hours of observation and contemplation that lie behind the finished works, and reveal the artistís complete creative process."

Tate Britain hopes to keep The Blue Rigi in the country after being offered it for UKP4.95 million. The Tate has pledged UKP2 million out of its own funds and hopes to raise the rest before the government's export banning order runs out on 20 March this year.

With luck and cash, the last several days of the exhibition will be in celebration of the success of that money-raising project. Turner: The Riga Watercolours runs from 22 January to 25 March. Entrance is free.

More info here



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